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Whose “Empowerment”?

In this Guest Post, blogger Meghna Ravishankar explores ideas on Western feminism, empowerment, and the development enterprise in a publication featured in The Riveter Magazine. Ravishankar interviews Locus members Donella Rapier, CEO of BRAC USA, and Ellie Price, Locus Coalition Coordinator,  among other voices. Challenges to measuring empowerment, supporting women’s resource ownership, and counter-productive performance pressures development partners face under current donor paradigms are discussed. Resonant…

October 12, 2017

Locus Coalition Appoints New Coordinator

In August 2017, the Locus Coalition named Ellie Price its new Coordinator, succeeding Gregory Adams in the role of leading the coalition. Ms. Price comes from FHI 360 where she was a Program Officer on the Crisis Response and Integrated Development team. While at FHI 360, Price led the Locus Coalition’s research  to quantify the impact of legislative directives in the U.S. foreign assistance budget on…

September 15, 2017

Strengthening the global health workforce

Most will agree that health workers play an important role in health systems, eradicating diseases, empowering communities, and strengthening local economies. Yet few donor-funded projects focus exclusively on the health workforce.


April 5, 2017

The role of Community Health Workers in the heart of crisis

The average length of conflict-induced displacement is 17 years, which means communities in displaced situations require support that are not just effective in the short-term but will pave a path towards resiliency for the long-term. Entering the humanitarian space, as FHI 360 does, with a robust development background can offer new insights for how to approach humanitarian problems. We are combining methods which hold the possibility of bringing sustainable solutions to traditional humanitarian delivery models that usually tackle problems with emergency in mind.


April 4, 2017

Putting Vision into Focus: Lessons on scaling up a social enterprise

Approximately 12.7 million people in Bangladesh suffer from near vision loss, a consequence of the eye’s natural aging process. Without correction, it can significantly impact a person’s productivity, with serious financial, health and social implications. Uncorrected, vision costs the global economy an estimated $227 billion in lost income-earning potential. However, there is a seemingly simple fix.


Investing in the next generation of health workers

In Krio, I was called “belly woman.” Rural Sierra Leonean communities had not seen many foreign pregnant “belly women.” Sierra Leone had been recovering from years of conflict that had broken its health system and forced health workers to flee. The 2014-2015 Ebola epidemic only served to demonstrate how this weak health system and inadequate health workforce had prevented an effective response to the epidemic, and left communities without any other basic health services.


April 3, 2017

Let’s Stop Playing Catch Up: How Stronger Integration Helps Us Get Ahead of Threats

Achieving the SDG objective of universal coverage of WASH by 2030 will contribute to other important development goals, food security and public health in particular, and help prevent a number of threats. To accomplish these inter-related goals, we need to ensure that the key local stakeholders, in the WASH sector and far beyond, are all in this together. More localized, grown-up conversations amongst various ‘competing’ sectors can help us make greater strides toward 100% coverage of WASH, and make vital progress toward public health and food security.


March 21, 2017

Our “biggest frustrations” in building gender sensitive programs

Yesterday was International Women’s Day—a moment for intense reflection for development workers. Thinking hard about gender forces us to think hard about good development: when we force ourselves to confront the many related needs, wants and perspectives of women and girls, we also force ourselves to confront where our standard development toolkit often comes up short in serving those same needs, wants and perspectives.


March 8, 2017

Want to help women take more control? Help them tackle multiple problems at once

As my colleague John Coonrod noted, women face an array of challenges which can’t be solved in isolation. If you help a mom send her daughter to school on an empty stomach, how much will she really learn? If you help a woman take her children to a doctor, but they are drinking polluted water, how much will their health improve? In fact, interventions that…


March 7, 2017

Same recipe, different geography: Holistic approaches are smart for girls and women everywhere

Here’s a development scenario you’re probably familiar with: Imagine a young girl growing up in a remote rural area, raised in a poor family. Girls here are not typically encouraged in the same way as boys are to imagine themselves having exciting future careers, nor even the more vanilla option of working at the sole local factory. Virtually all the local authority figures are men.…


Silos are Sexist

As Locus members, we are committed to integrated programming, but why? And why does it seem to be such an uphill struggle in a world where the prevailing development paradigm is dominated by top-down, narrowly focused, short-term interventions? The most important reason to pursue integrated programming is that it works for women. Women living in poverty suffer from time poverty. Want to invest in women’s…


Building a Different World of Work for Women and Girls

Women and girls provide much of the labor and talent that makes our communities work. But they routinely don’t get the pay, opportunities or esteem that men do. International Women’s Day forces us to pay special attention to the variety of challenges that women and girls face, particularly in the world of work. As we celebrate the unique and various contributions of women and girls…



The years leading up to the 2015 benchmark for global goals saw enthusiastic calls for doing development differently, reaching a crescendo as the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted to guide our work through 2030.

February 7, 2017


The Locus coalition has named Gregory Adams as its new director. Adams joins the coalition from Oxfam America where he most recently served as director of the organization’s aid effectiveness team and global aid policy lead.

February 2, 2017


Integrated development, which intentionally combines multisectoral approaches to address complex development challenges, is gaining in reputation and popularity. As more programs around the globe use integrated approaches, researchers, development practitioners and other aid professionals need guidance on how to measure the impact of these approaches. FHI 360’s integrated development team, with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the FHI Foundation, has been…

January 6, 2017


With the Sustainable Development Goals nearing their one-year anniversary, the global community continues to strive toward eradicating poverty by 2030. In order to achieve this ambitious target, many international development practitioners are embracing a more holistic approach to development, combining traditionally single-sector programming, like health or environment work, into more comprehensive efforts. But such integrated development is sometimes easier said than done. Locus, a coalition…

September 27, 2016


Although it comes with challenges, integration is essential to international development and holds vast potential for achieving more sustainable results, a panel of experts agreed during a wide-ranging discussion on integrated programming.

September 1, 2016


The old saying that “All politics is local” is especially true when it comes to overcoming poverty and hunger. Issues of good nutrition, primary education, primary health care, water and sanitation, skills training, preserving the environment and ensuring public safety are all local issues. Nations can allocate budgets and launch national programs, but actually getting basic public services to work requires good local government.

February 2, 2016


Hunger is not inevitable. It is not too big of a problem to solve. In fact, it has improved dramatically in just the last 30 years. Indeed, according to international agencies like the World Bank and United Nations, ending extreme poverty and hunger by the year 2030 are an ambitious, yet achievable goal, in need of transformational policies that address inequality and boost shared prosperity.…

February 1, 2016


Throughout Africa, South Asia and Latin America, Hunger Project programs operate in rural and sometimes remote communities. Since we began monitoring programs using cutting-edge mobile technology, areas without internet connection have posed a challenge for our committed Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) team. To meet these challenges, The Hunger Project has implemented the ThunderPlug®. ThunderPlug® is a compact device that runs the server of iFormBuilder (the…


From Kendari to Mosul and Abuja to San Francisco, people across the world will celebrate Dec. 31, the close of another year and the promise of a brighter year to come. But this New Year’s Eve will be more than a time for personal reflection and writing resolutions. It also marks the end of the Millennium Development Goals and the start of a new chapter…

January 29, 2016


It is up to development organizations to steer the sector and its funders toward an integrated approach, and the effort must be backed by evidence, panelists agreed during a first-of-its-kind international development discussion organized by a new coalition known as Locus: The Point of International Development. The June 23 event, held in Washington, D.C., included speakers from Pact, FHI 360 and Aga Khan Foundation. All…


The Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the United Nations in September provide an expansive vision of what we can accomplish over the next 15 years. Unlike the previous global development agenda, they include goals for all countries, not just poor ones, and more consideration for protecting our planet. The language also emphasizes that the new goals are integrated and indivisible, something the authors explain as…

December 7, 2015

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